Facebook is populated with parents and grandparents who are eager to keep up with family members and long lost friends, but where are the teens? According to a study by GlobalWebIndex, when teenagers were surveyed in 30 countries, their active Facebook rate dropped from 76% in the first quarter of 2013 to 56% in the third quarter of 2013.
So if the teens are not on Facebook, and we know they are still on social media, where are they?
WeChat, which is out of China is not as popular in America, but apps like Vine (a place to share your videos), Flickr, Instagram (photo/video sharing sites), and Snapchat are popular. As a parent I wish my kids would be on Foursquare so that I could always track their movements.
For the most part, our students are not as tech-saavy as some other students their age, however, this is a global, flat world space we are living in. As parents, keep the communication lines open. Ask them to show you what apps they have. The social media allows people to share their life widely and be liked by total strangers. It allows them to be creative and get immediate feedback. It allows them to capture their immortality and be one of the beautiful people. Know this ahead of time. Rather than automatically shutting everything down, have a conversation about safety and modesty and living pono. Learn about these apps, and if they use it, try it too so that you know what the appeal as well as the dangers are. If you really don’t like it, at least you can share your own worries and concerns based on your experience and exploration before banning something in your home.
Let the Force guide you.